American-Scandinavian Association of the Great Plains brings in speaker for April 1 program in Lindsborg

By John Pearson
March 23, 2015

A free public program on Ernst T. Skarstedt, nineteenth century Swedish American author, journalist, and editor of several Swedish language books and newspapers, will be held Wednesday, April 1, at 12 Noon in Bethany Lutheran Church parish hall, 320 North Main Street, Lindsborg — with John E. Norton of Moline, Illinois, as the speaker.

Sponsored by the American-Scandinavian Association of the Great Plains, both the program and a preceding potluck lunch at 11:30 a.m. are open to the public without charge.

John Norton, an accomplished translator and author himself, will reveal some anecdotes, facts, and fascinating comments from and about Skarstedt.  Among other activities, Norton is editor of Augustana Historical Society Newsletter.  

Skarstedt was born April 14, 1857, in Kungälv, Sweden, and died March 13, 1929.  During his travels, he visited Lindsborg in 1879 and wrote about observations and experiences while in Kansas.

Skarstedt emigrated to the United States in 1878.  In 1880 he became co-editor of Svenska amerikanaren, and in 1880 was appointed co-editor of Svenska tribunen — both published in Chicago.  Beginning in 1891 he edited Vestkusten, published in San Francisco.  Skarstedt later was hired as the editor of Nordstiernan in New York City.   After moving to Portland, Oregon, Skarstedt published a local Swedish language newspaper, Demokraten.  

In 1890 Skarstedt published Oregon och Washington: Dessa staters historia, resurser och folkliv (Oregon and Washington: The History, Resources and Folklore of These States), and three books about Swedish immigrants.

More information about the potluck and program is available from ASA president Dr. Duane Fredrickson, Lindsborg, phone 785-227-3678.